The plan to extend the Legacy Trail into downtown Sarasota is gaining momentum.
On Tuesday, the Gulf Coast Community Foundation posted a web page aimed at raising $75,000 to pay for half of a feasibility study to pave the way for an eight-mile extension of the Legacy Trail. Entrepreneur Jesse Biter had approached the organization about being the project's fiscal agent and building a website to collect donations in early January.
Twenty donors have already pledged nearly $2,000 in the first 24 hours since the web page went live.
The Legacy Trail includes more than 10 miles of recreational trails stretching from Venice to just south of Clark Road and the city of Sarasota. In August, Sarasota County commissioners earmarked $75,000 from the Trails Master Plan capital improvement project for the study, which county staff expect to cost about $150,000.
"The study is much like a set of plans an architect does for a house prior to construction," Biter said in a Jan. 15 email.
"It's used by many thousands of Sarasota residents and it remains an attraction to visitors and potential residents." Biter said, and extending the Legacy Trail is important for safety, convenience and economic value. The extension would stretch north to Fruitville Road near U.S. 301.
"Once the study is complete, I will work with my State and Federal connections to secure the monies needed to make the extension a reality," Biter said.
Click here to donate or find out more about the plan to extend the Legacy Trail.